Utah Valley Global Health Group

A blog about global health for those living in Utah Valley and their friends.

Of Mormons and Measles

Posted by ryanlindsay on December 6, 2008

According to a recent WHO press release, the Measles Initiative is working with a 74% reduction in measles cases since 2000. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints has donated at least 3 million dollars to the initiative. Members of the church have also given of their time at vaccine events in Angola, Ghana, Kenya, Madagascar, Namibia, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Swaziland, Uganda and Zimbabwe. Presiding Bishop David H. Burton has said that “over 54,000 Church members volunteered to help organize the effort.”

Beyond monetary contributions, I would like to see more initiatives like this Measles vaccination program that tap into local congregations to mobilize communities. Could this serve as a model for future initiatives?

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4 Responses to “Of Mormons and Measles”

  1. chads said

    Thanks for the post, Ryan. It seems to me that campaigns such as this one will be most effective with a consistent, long-term committment. That way, all involved learn from mistakes (and successes!), and can establish institutions and organizations that can respond more effectively.

    (BTW, if interested, I had posted an introduction to the disease, as well as the experience of some volunteers with the Measles campaign a while back. Just go to categories, then measles.)

    • ryanlindsay said

      I agree Chad, if the measles initiative can continue to make progress, then they should keep the infrastructure and commit new monies to anew disease or problem. What do you think that future initiatives should focus on?

  2. Mallory said

    I think within the Mormon church we have such a great understanding of how to organize ourselves and making commitments to serving our fellow man. I really enjoyed this post because it shows how our efforts make a huge impact. I hope that the church continues to participate in such initiatives but also works to get our amazingly large and hardworking member base more involved.
    I also agree with Chad’s comment that this needs to be consistent and long-term especially for learning how to be most effective attacking other problems and diseases.

  3. medhead said

    Thanks for highlighting the Measles initiative! As the press release you link to mentions, Global Health Progress partners the GAVI Alliance, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies and Merck Co. participated in that initiative, as well. Congratulations to all involved!

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